Public Policy Network

Helping You and Your Organization Engage in Policy Debates

FHLBank Pittsburgh's Public Policy Network (PPN) is a coalition of housing, economic development and financial industry advocates. Membership is free and includes invitations to events with members of Congress, monthly policy updates and quarterly conference calls featuring industry experts.

Public Policy Updates

Stay up-to-date on issues facing housing, economic development and the FHLBanks with Allison Karakis' monthly policy updates.

July 2021

Many Democrats in Congress are frustrated by the months-long, bi-partisan infrastructure negotiations that seem to have made little progress. With control of the presidency and both chambers of Congress, the party has a growing sense of urgency to move President Biden's agenda forward before the mid-term elections.

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May 2021

According to AAA®, more than 37 million people are expected to travel 50 miles or more this Memorial Day weekend. This is an increase of 60% from last year and 34 million of those planning to travel will drive. While many Americans will enjoy their much-needed vacation, few will be dwelling on the ongoing infrastructure spending debate in Washington. Congress too will be in recess but will continue negotiations in earnest.

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April 2021

Orange cones are appearing across the country as spring ushers in highway construction season to upgrade the more than four million miles in the U.S. highway system. Road closures and traffic will cause driver frustration which serves as an appropriate backdrop for the debate in Washington over infrastructure spending that will likely be long and difficult.

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March 2021

America's focus on the "first 100 days" of a new administration began when Franklin D. Roosevelt used the phrase in a fireside chat broadcasted in 1933. Taking office during the Great Depression, Roosevelt quickly pushed Congress to pass 15 bills, including the Emergency Banking Act and other New Deal programs. This became the standard for discussing the early effectiveness of new presidents.

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February 2021

Shortly after President Biden took the oath of office, three new senators were sworn-in giving Democrats the majority. While controlling both the House and Senate will give Democrats many advantages, including the ability to set hearings schedules, the slim margins will enable moderates from both parties to have powerful input on legislative outcomes over the next two years.

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Year End

The origins of the annual New Year's Eve ball drop can be traced to Royal Navy Captain Robert Wauchope who invented the time ball in 1829. These devices dropped at the same hour each day to help ships keep accurate time, which was essential to determine longitude while at sea.

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November 2020

The highly-anticipated November elections are finally over with Joe Biden becoming the president-elect. The House remains in Democratic control by a slim margin, while a few seats remain undetermined. In typical 2020 fashion, control of the Senate is still unknown and will be decided by two runoff elections in Georgia.

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Allison Karakis, Government Relations Director
Office: 412-288-7302

Allison Karakis, who joined FHLBank Pittsburgh in 2015, manages FHLBank Pittsburgh in-district government relations program, the Public Policy Network.
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